ONALASKA FIRST CHURCH OF GOD

"Where Your Experience In Christ, Makes You A Member"

133 3rd Avenue,  P.O. Box 245,  Onalaska,  Washington  98570     (360) 978-4161      FAX (360) 978-6941  
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JULY 2, 2006

 “THE PRICE THAT WAS PAID” 

SCRIPTURE READING: I PETER 1:13-22 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: 1 PETER 1:18-19 (KJV) Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:  

INTRO: Two hundred thirty years ago our country fought for and won her freedom.  

   Since that time there have been many other conflicts and wars to maintain our freedom and provide freedom for others. 

   We must never forget THE PRICE THAT WAS PAID for our freedom (it was the blood and life of others). 

   Some two thousand years ago, Jesus paid the price to fulfill God’s promise of freedom from sin.

    Just as we sometimes forget THE PRICE THAT WAS PAID for our National Freedom, we also forget THE PRICE THAT WAS PAID for our spiritual freedom 

I. THE LOST OF FREEDOM 

GENESIS 1:26-27 (KJV) And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

 NOTE: Man is the high point of God’s creation. 

   When man was created he was created free from sin. 

GENESIS 1:31 (KJV) And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.  

   With every freedom comes the responsibility of choice. 

   We can chose to live in the freedom we have, or give it up for something else. 

ROMANS 6:20 (KJV) For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness.  

   Adam and Eve chose to give up the freedom from sin, in order to experience the knowledge of good and evil. 

GENESIS 2:16-17 (KJV) And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.  

   The spirit of man dies when it loses its freedom. 

   The longer man is separated from God the more oppressive sin becomes. 

PROVERBS 5:22-23 (KJV) His own iniquities shall take the wicked himself, and he shall be holden with the cords of his sins.
He shall die without instruction; and in the greatness of his folly he shall go astray.  

JOHN 8:34 (KJV) Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.  

ROMANS 6:16 (KJV) Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?  

   Sin is an evil and cruel taskmaster and we need to be free from sin’s control. 

ROMANS 6:23a (KJV) For the wages of sin is death... 

HEBREWS 9:27 (KJV) And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:  

ROMANS 7:24 (KJV) O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

    We are in desperate need of freedom from sin, but how can we obtain it?

II. THE PROMISE OF FREEDOM FROM SIN. 

NOTE: When Adam and Eve lost their freedom from sin, God promised to provide a way for them to reclaim this freedom. 

GENESIS 3:15 (KJV) And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.  

A.      GOD KNOWS ALL US AND OUR SINS. 

NOTE: Our weakness and fallen nature is not hidden from God.

PSALMS 103:14 (KJV) For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.  

PSALMS 90:8 (KJV) Thou hast set our iniquities before thee, our secret sins in the light of thy countenance.

    He is well aware of our inabilities to redeem ourselves. 

PSALMS 130:3 (KJV) If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?  

B.      GOD LOVES US IN SPITE OF WHOM AND WHAT WE ARE.

 PSALMS 130:4 (KJV) But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.

 JEREMIAH 29:11 (GW) I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord. They are plans for peace and not disaster, plans to give you a future filled with hope.

 NOTE: God has provided a way for us to return to the freedom He created us for, the choice is ours to make.

 JEREMIAH 29:12-14 (GW) Then you will call to me. You will come and pray to me, and I will hear you. When you look for me, you will find me. When you wholeheartedly seek me, I will let you find me, declares the Lord. I will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I've scattered you, declares the Lord. I will bring you back from the place where you are being held captive.

 III. THE PRICE THAT WAS PAID.

 1 PETER 1:18-19 (KJV) Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:

 NOTE: There are those, sad to say, who think they can obtain Salvation though efforts of their own.

 A.      WE WERE NOT REDEEMED (BOUGHT BACK) WITH CORRUPTIBLE THINGS:

 ·      Silver and gold (money)

 ·     Vain conversation (behavior)

B.      OUR REDEMPTION WAS PAID BY THE BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST. 

MATTHEW 26:26-28 (GW) While they were eating, Jesus took bread and blessed it. He broke the bread, gave it to his disciples, and said, “Take this, and eat it. This is my body.” Then he took a cup and spoke a prayer of thanksgiving. He gave it to them and said, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood, the blood of the promise. It is poured out for many people so that sins are forgiven.  

1 JOHN 1:7& 9 (GW) But if we live in the light in the same way that God is in the light, we have a relationship with each other. And the blood of his Son Jesus cleanses us from every sin. God is faithful and reliable. If we confess our sins, he forgives them and cleanses us from everything we've done wrong.  

CONCLUSION: God longs to free us from the bondage of sin and to fulfill to us the promise of freedom from sin.

 The choice is ours to make: 

·         Freedom to sin and become more and more in its bondage.

·         Freedom from sin and the liberty to live as God intended us to live.

  

JULY 9, 2006 

THERE IS SOMEONE I WOULD LIKE YOU TO MEET

 SCRIPTURE READING: JOHN 4:1-30 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: JOHN 4:28-29 (KJV) The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men, come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?  

INTRO: I enjoy and feel proud to introduce someone I love and respect to someone who does not know them.

    That’s how we should feel about Jesus. 

   We have the glorious privilege and the awesome responsibility of sharing the Gospel message with those around us. 

   The only qualification we need to share the Gospel is that we have experienced the Grace of God ourselves.

    We may not all be not called to preach, but we are all called to witness. 

ACTS 1:8 (KJV) But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.  

   People often try and use the excuse, I’m not trained or qualified to share the Gospel.” 

   God does not call the qualified, He qualifies the called. 

   I wish to share with you several different groups of unlikely people that God used to spread the Good News.

 

·         A farmer

·         A demoniac

·         An adulteress

·         Ignorant & unlearned men.

I.  AMOS (A herdsman & farmer)  

AMOS 7:14-15 (KJV) Then answered Amos, and said to Amaziah, I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet's son; but I was an herdman, and a gatherer of sycomore fruit: and the LORD took me as I followed the flock, and the LORD said unto me, Go, prophesy unto my people Israel.

 NOTE: Amos was not a son of a prophet nor had he attended a prophet school. 

   He was completely untrained.

    The only qualification he had was the call of God. 

   His message was simple: 

·         Sin no matter what it is, is still sin when compared to God’s grace.

·         Religious rituals, that which fail to disturb one’s conscience or change one’s live, are not pleasing to God.

·         The greatest peril to men’s souls lies not in poverty but rather in prosperity.

·         God’s dealing with man is for their restoration not destruction.

II. A DEMONIAC.

 LUKE 8:38-40 (KJV) Now the man out of whom the devils were departed besought him that he might be with him: but Jesus sent him away, saying, “Return to thine own house, and shew how great things God hath done unto thee.” And he went his way, and published throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done unto him.  And it came to pass, that, when Jesus was returned, the people gladly received him: for they were all waiting for him.  

NOTE: Here is probably the last person anyone of us would consider to carry the Gospel message. 

·         Everyone in the area knew him and feared him.

·         He lived among the tombs. (wrong side of the tracks)

·         He was beyond the hope and help of mankind.

·         He had been possessed by a legion of demons.

   The very best sermon preached is the changed life that takes place when Jesus touches a person who has been bound by sin. 

   People wanted to know what made the change in his life. 

   All this man had to do was to tell the people that knew him what Jesus had done for him. 

III. AN ADULTERESS.  

JOHN 4:39-42 (KJV) And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.  So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode there two days. And many more believed because of his own word; and said unto the woman, “Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world.”  

NOTE: Here was someone who had been discarded by society and rejected by the decent folks of the community.

    Her sin was a sin of morality that was highly condemned even in the Samaritan community. 

   JOHN 4:28-29 (KJV) The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men, “Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?”  

   This woman did three things in sharing Jesus. 

·         She left her waterpot (Jesus changed her priorities)

·         She went to the men

·         She shared how Jesus knew all about her yet did not reject or condemned her.

IV. IGNORANT & UNLEARNED MEN.

 ACTS 4:13 (KJV) Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.  

NOTE: These men were consider uneducated by those of higher learning. 

   They had no degree in theological studies. 

   Too often we put more stock in man’s education than in God’s inspiration. 

NOTE: The two men that had the greatest influence in both the Old and New Testaments were men of high education; Moses & Paul. 

   Education is a tool; inspiration is the power and the authority of God. 

   God’s anointing can overcome the lack of a tool, but the most sophisticated tool can not replace the anointing.

 1 CORINTHIANS 1:26-29 (KJV)  For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: but God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; and base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: that no flesh should glory in his presence.   

CONCLUSION: We are all called to be witnesses and none of us can find an excuse why we can’t share the Good News of Jesus Christ. 

   We are the Bible the unbelievers read. 

 

JULY 16, 2006 

THE NEED FOR A SPIRITUAL CHECKUP 

SCRIPTURE READING: PROVERBS 4:20-27

 SCRIPTURE TEXT: PSALMS 139:23-24 (KJV)  

   Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.  

INTRO: It is very important that we have annual physical checkups. 

   Early detection of health problems can save us considerable money and suffering.

    It will almost always bring changes. 

·         We may need to take certain medicines

·         We may need surgery

·         We may need to make changes in our lifestyle

   But if we catch it early enough we will be able to live a long and healthy life. 

   Those who fail to have regularly checkups often find out about health problems too late. 

   This is also true considering our spiritual health. 

ILL:  What Do You Do With Sin? (“Nip it in the bud) 

   The sooner we detect sin creeping into our lives the easier it is to get rid of it.

    Knowing what to do and doing it are two different things.

    Solomon knew what needed to be done but he failed to heed his own advice.

    There are several areas in our lives that we need to pay close attention to in regards of our spiritual checkups: 

·         Our mind

·         Our ears

·         Our heart

·         Our tongue

·         Our eyes 

·         Our feet

I. OUR MIND (vs. 20) 

PROVERBS 4:20a (NIV) My son, pay attention to what I say;  

NOTE: Our thinking process is vital in our spiritual life. 

PROVERBS 23:7a (NASB) For as he thinks within himself, so he is.  

   Thinking that needs to be changed. 

·         Negative

NOTE: Negative thinking never considers the power of God.

 2 KINGS 7:2 (NLT) The officer assisting the king said to the man of God, "That couldn't happen even if the LORD opened the windows of heaven!" But Elisha replied, "You will see it happen, but you won't be able to eat any of it!"  

·         Sinful

PSALMS 66:18 (GW) If I had thought about doing anything sinful, the Lord would not have listened {to me}.  

·         Selfish

   We need our mind renewed continually. 

ROMANS 12:2 (NIV) Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will.  

II. OUR EARS 

PROVERBS 4:20b (NIV) 4:20 listen closely to my words.  

NOTE: Whose voice we listen to will make a great difference in our spiritual life? 

·         The voice of man (self-serving)

·         The voice of Satan (disobedience to God)

·         The voice of God

 The voice of God is best heard in the Scriptures. 

ROMANS 10:17 (KJV) So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.  

III. OUR HEARTS 

PROVERBS 4:23 (KJV) 4:23 Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.  

NOTE: Our heart is the center of our emotions, what we love and what we desire. 

   Our heart and mind effect more of our physical body than any thing else this is also true concerning our spiritual body. 

MATTHEW 13:22 (NIV) The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful.  

JEREMIAH 17:9-10 (KJV) 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.  

   We need to check the desires of our hearts continually.  

IV. OUR TONGUE 

PROVERBS 4:24 (GW) Remove dishonesty from your mouth. Put deceptive speech far away from your lips.  

JAMES 3:5-6 (KJV) 3:5 Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.  

JAMES 3:9-10 (KJV) Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God.  Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.

V. OUR EYES 

PROVERBS 4:20-21 (KJV) My son, attend to my words… Let them not depart from thine eyes;  

PROVERBS 4:25 (KJV) 4:25 Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee.  

NOTE: Where are we looking for guidance and direction?

    It is easy to get distracted by the glitter of this world. 

ILL: Lot looked to the well water land of Jordan. 

GENESIS 13:10 (KJV) And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where, before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar.  

HEBREWS 12:2 (KJV) Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith… 

VI. OUR FEET 

PROVERBS 4:26-27 (KJV) Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil.

NOTE: Our feet are our foundation.  Where we walk and what we stand for will determine where we spend eternity.

 PSALMS 1:1 (KJV) Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.  

PSALMS 15:1-2 (KJV) LORD, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in thy holy hill? He that walketh uprightly…

 PSALMS 23:1-3 (KJV) The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

CONCLUSION: “A spiritual checkup is the key to spiritual health.”

 

JULY 30, 2006

LEARNING ALL ABOUT HEAVEN BUT NEVER TAKING THE TRIP

 SCRIPTURE READING: MATTHEW 7:21-27 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: JAMES 1:22-24 (NIV) Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like.  

INTRO: I have wanted to take a cruise to Alaska as long as I can remember.

    There are many people who say they want to go to Heaven but have never accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior.

    They are like those who gather all in information about taking a cruise but never going on one. 

JOHN 3:5 (KJV) Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. “ 

   The Bible tells us that all of us are born into sin. 

ROMANS 5:12 (KJV) Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:

 ROMANS 5:17 (KJV) For if by one man's offence death reigned by one…

 ROMANS 5:18 (KJV) Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation…

 ROMANS 5:19 (KJV) For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners… 

I.  SALVATION IS NOT DEPENDENT ON OUR GOODNESS. 

NOTE: Too often we seek to compare our sinfulness or lack there of with others whom we consider more sinful.

 2 CORINTHIANS 10:12 (KJV) For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

ILL: Five men facing with escaping from a forest fire by jumping a 30 foot leap over a chasm 1,500 feet deep. 

·         A very sinful man (can jump 2 feet)

·         A less sinful man (can jump 10 feet)

·         A morally good man but doesn’t go to church (can jump 15 feet)

·         A man who goes to church but has not accepted Jesus as his Savior (can jump 20 feet)

·         A man who has accepted Jesus as his Savior (walks across on the invisible bridge of the Grace of Jesus Christ)

 NOTE: Eternity in Hell is not dependent on the amount of sin in our lives but rather on the fact that we have failed to accept God’s grace. 

II.  SALVATION IS BASED ON OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS CHRIST AND HE ALONE.

 NOTE: God has freely provided Salvation through His Son, Jesus Christ.

    It is a free gift the God offers to all who would accept. 

   There are several steps in experiencing God’s Salvation. 

·         We must acknowledge ourselves as a sinner.

·         We must acknowledge that we are unable to save ourselves.

·         We must acknowledge that Jesus paid the full price on the cross.

·         We must accept Him as our Lord and Savior.

 ROMANS 2:13 (GW) People who merely listen to laws from God don't have God's approval. Rather, people who do what those laws demand will have God's approval.  

NOTE: There are those who want to accept Jesus as Savior, but are unwilling to accept Him as Lord.

    Three things that we are to do if we are in obedience to God’s Word.

    A.  WE ARE TO LOVE. 

NOTE: The Word of God teaches us that we are to love God more than anything or anyone else. 

MATTHEW 22:36-40 (KJV) Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.  

   It is how we care one for another that shows whether or not we are true Christians. 

JOHN 13:35 (KJV) By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.  

NOTE: We will either LOVE, HATE, or be INDIFFERENT.  

   B.  WE ARE TO WORSHIP. 

NOTE: How can we say we love God and His people if we fail to gather together to worship, work and share with one another. 

HEBREWS 10:24-25 (GW) We must also consider how to encourage each other to show love and to do good things. We should not stop gathering together with other believers, as some of you are doing. Instead, we must continue to encourage each other even more as we see the day of the Lord coming.

 LUKE 4:16 (KJV) And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up for to read.

    C.  WE ARE TO GIVE.

 2 CORINTHIANS 9:6-10 (NLT) Remember this—a farmer who plants only a few seeds will get a small crop. But the one who plants generously will get a generous crop. You must each make up your own mind as to how much you should give. Don't give reluctantly or in response to pressure. For God loves the person who gives cheerfully. And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others. As the Scriptures say, "Godly people give generously to the poor. Their good deeds will never be forgotten."  For God is the one who gives seed to the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will give you many opportunities to do good, and he will produce a great harvest of generosity in you.

 NOTE: How we deal with the following three items in our relationship with God; reveals where we place God in our lives. 

·         Talent

·         Time

·         Treasure

CONCLUSION: It is not enough to know all about Heaven, we must make sure that we will go there when we die.

 

 

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